The Dash In Between
I heard a motivational speech a few months ago while I was on the elliptical (hey whatever works right) and it has been stuck in my head ever since. It was talking about this one life that everyone gets to live. On your headstone you have two dates - your birthdate and the date that you die. Then, there is that little dash in between. Life is lived in the dash in between.
This hit me - when I heard it, it nearly knocked me down (good thing I composed myself or I would have looked pretty silly randomly falling off the elliptical). This statement that has been running around in my head for weeks. The dash in between. Now, whether or not you actually want a gravestone or not (I’m still on the fence about this one) it still has significant meaning. Your life is such a precious gift, think about it - you are a miracle just for being born.
Little fact about me, I am an avid Googler - once Google came out I fell in love because I used to have to look everything up old school (also known as those huge encyclopedias that were by each letter of the alphabet). I have always questioned things and l’m full of the most random facts - like how holy water is actually made. So, of course, I had to look up the stats on you actually being born. We are talking about 1 in 400 trillion of you being born and actually you being you. Sit back and ponder that for a minute. Your life has significant meaning if you just being born is a miracle.
However, life is lived in the dash in between. Furthermore, the one thing that everyone born can never get out of - death. Not to be morbid - this is just the fact of life. We don’t know how or when it is going to happen and it’s not something that we can control. Maybe that’s what makes death so scary for some (yes, I am in that category as a reformed control freak) - because it’s something that you can’t predict. This became all to real for me a few years ago when I found out for myself how quickly life could be over.
Life is truly lived in the dash in between. It’s about living it to the fullest, with no regrets about what chances you didn’t take or even the chances that you took that might not have worked out the way you had wanted. It’s about living a life that you absolutely love and not being scared of taking the chances. It’s about waking up in the morning and being grateful that you have one more chance - because you have one more chance to do the things that excite you, scare you and make you feel alive. One more chance to live your dash in between.
I don’t pretend to have all the answers, but I do know that at least for now - we all have this one life to live. Life is such a beautiful miracle - it would be such a shame to waste such a miracle on giving into your fears, what ifs and staying in your comfy little comfort zone instead of actually living it. Change can be scary for some and when you talk about changing something in your life - that is new and uncharted territory. However, more people on their deathbeds talked about the regrets they had for the chances that they didn’t take.
Ask yourself this - are you going to regret taking that chance and making the change on your deathbed - or always wondering what if you had done it? What if you hadn’t waited until it was too late? What if you had the motivation and the dedication to make the change that could take you to a completely different life? What if it didn’t work out? But what if it did? Life isn’t lived in the what ifs and the tomorrows or the next Monday’s. You are living your dash in between right now. Or are you? Only you can decide what your dash in between looks like and how you are living it. Right here, right now. This living, breathing miracle of the dash in between.